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7 Questions on Leadership with Ryan Weiss


Name: Ryan Weiss


Title: President


Organisation: EPS Zone


Ryan Weiss is passionate about engaging with business leaders who are interested in influencing the world in a positive way, and has over 20 years of success leading teams, programs, and operations to drive business results and profitability. His strong appreciation for diverse cultures was gained through extensive international work experience living in 3 countries, and leading global teams across more than 20 countries.

1. Founded & ran his first business from ages 15-20 to pay for college. That company is still growing today under his brother’s leadership serving thousands of clients in 50+ communities with a rapidly growing team. www.weisslawnandsnow.com

2. Global executive for a $20B chemical company, living in 3 countries, & leading teams of 200+ people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia. He also served as the Global Technology Manager of a $500M chemical portfolio. www.henkel.com

3. Founded EPS in 2016 to reengage his entrepreneurial spirit. The company has since grown to a global team serving clients across a wide variety of industries in North America (Construction, Services, Transportation, Manufacturing, and others) with a proprietary software platform, BPO team, and facilitation coaching team. www.epszone.com

Ryan earned degrees in Chemistry (uiuc.edu) & Finance (ku.edu) creating a foundation for understanding across the technical, leadership, and financial needs of businesses to thrive. Throughout the course of his career, he created what is now known as the OPTIC(S)™ System to enable companies to align people & process for accelerated performance. The OPTIC(S)™ System has been designed as a simple way for leadership teams to align for improved performance.

He is currently writing his second book, which is scheduled for release in early 2024. The book will provide readers with the ability to understand your challenges through a new lens of clarity.

Thank you to the 2,000 leaders who’ve generously done the 7 Questions on Leadership!


I hope Ryan's answers will encourage you in your leadership journey. Enjoy!


Cheers,

Jonno White



1. What have you found most challenging as a leader?


As a global executive in a large multinational, my biggest challenge as a leader was navigating the peer relationships to ensure that my team was being provided the right opportunities for growth.

As the founder of EPS, my biggest challenge has evolved. Now that every decision ultimately falls on my shoulders, I find that the weight of making wise decisions while balancing the impact of all relevant stakeholders has become the most challenging. I care deeply about my team, our clients, and the impact we have in our communities. As a result, navigating the decision making process with long term vision & confidence has become the most challenging part of my role.


2. How did you become a leader? Can you please briefly tell the story?


I started my first company at 15 years old, and that company has continued to grow under the leadership of my youngest brother to now have 4 locations, dozens of employees, and millions in revenue. At a young age, I began understanding the complexities of managing people, emotions, and processes to create balanced outcomes for everyone involved.

That journey continued in the corporate world as I was provided opportunities to develop thousands of people around the world, directly lead hundreds of people across 4 continents, and manage a $500M global technology portfolio. Leaving all of that to found my new venture in 2016 opened an entirely new chapter of leadership in my career.


3. How do you structure your work days from waking up to going to sleep?


As a leader in our church, husband, father, and founder of a rapidly growing company, I have found that my days have the ability to quickly sneak away if I am not intentional about my calendar. There are so many people in my life with whom I feel compelled to create value that I am always balancing to ensure personally important blocks of time are blocked out on my calendar with the 7F's of Faith, Family, Friends, Finances, Fitness, Fun, and Focus.


4. What's a recent leadership lesson you've learned for the first time or been reminded of?


The importance of clarity, focus, and understanding from other's perspectives.

I have had multiple situations recently where people's perceptions (including my own) were turned on their heads when personal direct communication was used to discuss issues that needed to be resolved.

In our world of social media, email, texting, and other less personal communications, the need for personal connection when leading is essential.


5. What's one book that has had a profound impact on your leadership so far? Can you please briefly tell the story of how that book impacted your leadership?


There are several books that have made an impact on my life, including the Proverbs outlined in the Bible (incredible wisdom), the Power of Habits (understanding the cue-action-reward cycle has been life changing), and Traction (the EOS system for businesses)


6. If you could only give one piece of advice to a young leader, what would you say to them?


Invest in & create value for the most important people & relationships in your life.


7. What is one meaningful story that comes to mind from your time as a leader, so far?


I experienced many successes in the first 25 years of my career. The biggest learning & growth came from a failure.

In 2018, I experienced a failure that set me back on my heels mentally and emotionally for about 6 months. I felt a deep sense of failure, depression, anxiety, and fears about my future during that time. As I came out of that period of my life, the things I learned prepared me for March 13, 2020 when I lost every client in 1 day due to COVID and the nature of my business. Since that time, my ability to detach self-worth from short term successes has enabled my organization to grow exponentially, myself to grow emotionally stronger, and for our team to focus on lasting impact for society. That transformation has been life changing in my leadership journey.

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